Monday, August 23, 2010

Pictures from "The Cord of Courage"

"The Cord of Courage" had it's final presentation night a week ago Sunday, but I've neglected this blog since then! Last week was spent trying to get the DVDs made - I kept running into unexpected errors. Thankfully, through by dad's help and with friends offering to make copies for me, the DVDs are nearly completed.

I've made a Picasa album of pictures from the dress rehearsals, that somewhat share the plot of "The Cord of Courage." I had quite a few people share pictures with me, and they got some great shots. You can see the album by clicking here. Enjoy!

And, praise God, the walls did fall every presentation night! We had a few snags with the clothesline getting caught, but those orchestrating the fall worked quickly to get it uncaught, and it flowed smoothly. The audience enjoyed it, and I heard a few comments about how neat it was that the musical had "special effects" as well! :)

Saturday, August 14, 2010

The Cord of Courage - Opening Night

God gave "The Cord of Courage" a wonderful opening night last night! The sanctuary was almost full, the actors did an excellent job, and all of the technical things went smoothly.

And the walls fell and crumbled when they were supposed to!

We serve an awesome God. I was praying before and throughout the production, and God showed clearly that He was in control of the musical. I left it in His hands, and He gave me peace. Sure, there were a few minor mishaps, but overall, it went so well!

To God be the glory! Great things He has done!

We have more presentations tonight (Saturday - 7 PM) and tomorrow (Sunday - 6 PM) . May God continue to use this musical mightily to touch many!

Friday, August 13, 2010

"We Get to be spies!"

Salmon and Eli, the spies sent to survey Jericho, are quite different personalities, which leads to a lot of fun. The actors, Ben and Sullivan, have done a great job playing off of each other!

Eli: "We get to be spies! I've been dreamin' about this my whole life!"

Salmon: "Remember what happened the last time spies were sent out... and remember: we are to blend in."

Will they blend in? Come and see!

Picture credit: JP Lofgren

The Scarlet Cord

Come to "The Cord of Courage" to see the many ways the scarlet cord has been woven into the story!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

The Cord of Courage - Cast

God has brought some great people together to be in "The Cord of Courage." It's amazing to see a picture of the whole cast... they look like so many, but I know each of them by name, and have enjoyed working with each one so much.

We had a good final dress rehearsal, though there were some sound and set glitches. I'm praying that everything will be smoothed out by tomorrow, and that many people will come and be blessed this Friday through Sunday.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Be Strong and Courageous

"Be strong and very courageous,
for the Lord goes with you wherever you go!"

More than just a re-occurring song in the musical, these words have definitely been a theme for the production.

"Don't be discouraged, and don't be afraid. He'll be close beside you and come to your aid!"

God has truly been close beside us through the whole production, and has given me peace and calmed my fears even in the busiest of times. We serve an awesome God!

"Courageous and strong we'll be!"

The Shirt Says it All...

Rob Pace, our assistant director, is a great help in getting the cast members to speak up and have good expression. With that in mind, his wife made him the perfect shirt to wear at the first dress rehearsal:

So, cast, as we go into the presentations this weekend, keep Mr. Rob's shirt in mind; speak LOUDER than you think possible, and SMILE (or give other applicable expressions) at all the appropriate times - don't just have a blank face. :)

Picture credit: Lavonne Hart

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Building the Jericho Wall

"The Cord of Courage" has presented unique challenges in terms of set design. There's the baptistery we had to put a floor over for Rahab's house, and an 8-panel foam backdrop painted to look like a desert, painted by 2 talented ladies from Fountain of Grace and 3 cast girls. I am so blessed by the people who have given so much time to make this a reality!

The most challenging set design was the Jericho wall. Unlike an ordinary wall, this one has to fall - preferably as the audience watched. Kevin Morton undertook the challenge of coming up with a design, using garden mesh as a base and duck tapping (and later hot gluing, when the tape kept releasing) foam pieces painted to look like stones to the mesh. A multitude of hours by many volunteers has gone into building the wall, and it turned out pretty amazing.

The picture was taken before the stones were reinforced with hot glue, so there's a few missing where the tape released. ;)

Now, to see if it will actually fall... It's rigged up so that it should when we untie the clothesline at the top, but we didn't get to practice it at the first dress rehearsal, due to those untying it not hearing the cue - the rumbling sound effect was drowned out by the Israelites' shout. We'll have to work out the timing. We're all hoping that when it does fall, it won't be damaged too much, since it has to be set up and then fall for three consecutive presentations!

Wednesday Update: Half of the wall fell last night, and it looked really neat as it crumbled! The other side stayed up, because some push pins used while building it were accidentally never removed. So, it's looking good - and we're hoping it will all fall at tomorrow night's dress rehearsal!

Picture credit: Rachael Morton and Samantha Brooks

Friday, August 6, 2010

The Cord of Courage - Promo Video

Today two cast members, Rachael Morton (playing Rahab) and Natalie Pace (playing Hephzibah, Rahab's sister) put together a great promo video for "The Cord of Courage." Enjoy this sneak peak into what the presentations will be like!

To God be the glory - He is doing great things among us!

Exciting things in store

We had our first dress rehearsal for "The Cord of Courage" last night. While it showed many things that need continued work, the cast did well getting through the entire musical in an hour and a half with few stops. It's exciting to look forward to what next weekend's presentations hold in store!

Monday, August 2, 2010

The Cord of Courage - Coming Together

The script has been studied again and again

Costumes have been sewn and tried on

Caleb's final composing (adding orchestration to the piano melodies) is coming along

Rehearsals are productive, and still lots of fun

And God is bringing many people and aspects of the production together. We have two weeks yet to go, but by God's grace, it will come to completion!

Picture credits: Rachel Russo, Natalie Pace, Lavonne and Caleb Hart

The Cord of Courage - Directors

Directors in green thinking about what to say about a scene...

And yes, I stand on the pews sometimes. It's the only way everyone on stage can see me!

Directing those up above in Rahab's house

What to do with a scarlet cord...

I am blessed with a great directorial team: Rob Pace, assistant director, and Miriam Hart, vocal director.

Picture credits: Lavonne Hart and Rachel Russo

The Cord of Courage - Rahab's House

Fountain of Grace has a baptistery built on a higher level above the stage, with a fairly wide opening. This was what I saw in the first picture idea in my head for this musical - Rahab's house in the baptistery area.

There were many things to figure out to make it work, though. My dad and others have been wonderful in making my ideas a reality. Dad built a floor over the baptistery, a ledge to make sure no one fell out, and also worked out the logistics of how to support the rope by which the spies are let out of the window.

Meanwhile, the actors are doing a great job bringing the characters to life in the house. From a bossy mother to a sweet younger sister, Rahab's house is a fun place to act!

They all hear a common correction, though: scoot closer together! Sitting on the sides of the sanctuary, it is harder to see the actors in the house. So, they have to get comfortable standing fairly close together!

Picture credits: Lavonne and Caleb Hart